The Chalky White Substance

by  Tennessee Williams

Short Play, Drama  /  2m

Two haggard male figures meet at the edge of a vast canyon.

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The Chalky White Substance

by  Tennessee Williams

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  • Cast Size

    Cast Size

  • Duration


    10 minutes
  • Audience

    Target Audience

    • Adult

Additional Info

Two haggard male figures meet at the edge of a vast canyon, overlooking a dried-out riverbed, in a future where the fallout from unnamed and uncountable nuclear wars continually floats through the air. It is the chalky white substance that covers the few inhabitants as they scramble in darkness and fear, fighting for the scarce, but indispensable, resources of water, food, shelter and human warmth.
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Performing Groups

  • College Theatre / Student
  • Professional Theatre
  • Blackbox / Second Stage /Fringe Groups

License details

  • Minimum Fee: £13 per performance plus VAT when applicable.

    This title is currently restricted in London, please contact the Licensing Department for further details.



  • Time Period: The Future
  • Duration: 10 minutes
  • Setting: A century or two after our time. The chasm over a dried up riverbed


LUKE - 20s
MARK - an older man
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Tennessee Williams

Tennessee Williams (1911-1983) explores passion with daring honesty, and forged a poetic theatre of raw psychological insight that shattered conventional proprieties and transformed the American stage. The autobiographical The Glass Menagerie brought what Mr. Williams called “the catastrophe of success,” a success capp ...

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The Chalky White Substance premiered in a production by the Running Sun Theatre Company at Center Stage in New York City in May 1996 under the direction of John Uecker.

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